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TWI Technology Centre North East Supports Local Community


Fri, 13 September, 2019

TWI showed support for the local region by having a giant artwork installed on the side of the TWI Technology Centre North East building in Middlesbrough as part of the Festival of Thrift.

The Artwork

The installation, which is called HALDANE and has been designed by artist Colin Davies, has been created from vinyl and points to the mining and shipbuilding heritage of the North East.

HALDANE depicts two canaries, which were once used in the mining industry to detect the presence of toxic gases. In addition, the artwork has been created using a ‘dazzle’ camouflage technique, which was used on ships during the First World War. 

Festival of Thrift

The Festival of Thrift is a community-based initiative to advance public awareness of sustainable living, with all the money raised going back into engaging more people in the local area. The festival was first held in Darlington in 2013 as upcycling and recycling enthusiasts came together to organise the event, which attracted 27,000 visitors.

The festival continued to grow over the next two years before it moved, in 2016, to the Kirkleatham Museum and Grounds in Redcar, attracting over 35,000 visitors. The event has been held at Redcar ever since as traders, craftspeople, artists, community organisations, businesses and educational establishments unite to bring attention to the region.

The festival not only aims to promote sustainable living and highlight issues around sustainability globally and locally, but also works to deliver artistic and cultural activities to local communities.

Celebrating the heritage of the Tees Valley and the North East, the Festival of Thrift has won numerous awards, including Best Event Teesside (in 2015 and 2017), gold as the North East Tourism Event of the Year and the Observer Ethical Awards for Arts and Culture.


For the second year in a row, the festival will be displaying installations and artworks across the Tees Valley to focus on the topic of clean air in the area. The installation at TWI is one of the installations and will join four others to be put up at the Darlington Indoor Market, near the Majuba car park by the seafront in Redcar, at Middlesbrough train station, and at the Palace Arts Gallery in Redcar. You can find out more about the VIEWPOINTS installations and artworks, including HALDANE, here.

The TWI Technology North East centre is supported by a grant from EDRF and TVCA. The Centre for Materials Integrity is receiving up to £4,054,821 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.  The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund.  Established by the European Union, The European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations.  For more information visit

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